SHAKEN: Workers inspect the damaged Christchurch Cathedral yesterday after the deadly earthquake rocked the city on Tuesday. It is the same cathedral Sarah’s aunt left just moments before the quake struck. AFP PHOTO / MARTY MELVILLE
SHAKEN: Workers inspect the damaged Christchurch Cathedral yesterday after the deadly earthquake rocked the city on Tuesday. It is the same cathedral Sarah’s aunt left just moments before the quake struck. AFP PHOTO / MARTY MELVILLE

What has Sarah done to incur natures fury?

STILL reeling from the utter annihilation of her home contents during the floods, Emerald’s Sarah Scoles seems unable to catch a break from Mother Nature’s fury, insurance beaucracy and federal government assistance.

With news of the fatal Christchurch 6.3 magnitude earthquake shattering New Zealand’s south island, Sarah was once again thrown into emotional turmoil as thoughts turned to her family members visiting the city.

“My aunty was visiting the Christchurch Cathedral and left about 20 minutes before the quake hit,” Sarah said.

“I talked to Nan, who is down south, and she was just a mess about it all. It’s so sad but we all knew it was going to happen again and I still think it’s not the end of it all,” she said, referring to the quake that struck in September.

Known for having an uncanny habit of being in nature’s destructive path, Sarah’s comforted by knowing while she and her family may cross Mother Nature’s path, they can come through it with humour intact.

It is that resilience that has strengthened her battle with insurer Allianz in the months following the floods.

“Allianz rang me... to ask if it was okay to hand all my notes over to NAB, as they are looking at doing something,” Sarah said.

Sarah remains hopeful – but is still coming to grips with the reality of the floods.

“I don’t have a total figure of what was lost but I’d only been in Emerald for a few months, so everything in my home was basically brand new,” she said.

Among the loss was her grandmother’s 102-year-old pearl necklace, which sat in fetid floodwaters for days. Sarah said she would never be able to replace the family treasure. Although she has applied for Centrelink flood assistance, Sarah is yet to see a single cent.

“It seems Brisbane people take priority – and it’s not fair,” she said.


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